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Technology skills for accounting and finance professionals; need of the hour


The ever-changing world of technology has changed not just the way we communicate and connect with each other, but has also impacted the business community. It has changed the way we work, the geographies we can work with and also the way to record, process and analyze financial data. Technology has the potential to make our tasks faster, easier, cost efficient and error-free. Digital transformation was the need of the hour in the business and financial world in order to stay ahead and improve efficiency, and the recent pandemic has only accelerated the process.

The changes now call for the accounting and finance professional, in industry or in practice, to upgrade their skills and capabilities in order to help accelerate the growth of their organization as well as that of their clients. Following is a list of skills that are now considered essential:

Efficient way to analyze and present financial data

The requirement of analysing the data and presenting it in a more meaningful format is gaining importance. If working side by side with technology is important, the ability to use the tools and data ot your disposal to affect decisions is even more critical. The Association (AICPA® and CIMA®) offers several resources to help finance and accounting professionals grow their data analytics skills. Some of these include our data analytics certificate programs, article and podcasts and an interactive data analytics quiz to test your skills.

Use of software and cloud accounting

Due to the digital transformation in the field of accounting and finance, professionals need to take crash courses as regular intervals to stay abreast. As most organization’s data has moved to the cloud and month-end closes have become automated, finance has had to get familiar with technologies such as robotic process automation, blockchain and data analytics applications.

Organizations have fast-tracked digital transformations to protect and serve customers in many ways and adapt to new business models. They are also using technology in order to outsource services and benefit from efficient service at lower cost.

Learn and unlearn with change in technology

This is the most important skill of them all. “Agility is about how flexible we can make an organization, a process or even an individual,” said a CFO of a global gas manufacturer and supplier. And pace, which is about “how quickly we can remove constraints and adjust processes to create impact.”

This mastery of technical skills is essential to ensure upskilling in the latest technical accounting and finance areas. We may need to unlearn and relearn some of the concepts we studied many years ago. To support this mind set, we need to embrace continuous learning to help us adapt better to our ever-evolving work world and enable us to take future opportunities.

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